Once she was done, I climbed over her, at full mast again. I cupped her warm, flushed cheek, staring deep into her eyes, feeling myself fall once more.

Time to focus on the list. On the reason she created it in the first place.

I had to do what I’d planned to do.

But before I could speak, she asked a question I wasn’t expecting.



She propped herself on her elbow, her head in her hand. “Why do you call me different things? At different times?”

Her gaze locked with mine as she leveled me with a question I didn’t want to answer.

I knew the answer. I was vaguely aware in the moment why I did it. But I also knew it wasn’t purposeful. Sometimes the sweet names slipped out.

“What do you mean?” I asked, hoping to buy some time to figure out what the hell to say.

“Well, sometimes I’m ‘dirty girl.’ Every now and then, I’m ‘sweet girl.’ And then there are these times when you call me ‘baby.’”

It didn’t take long for her to home in on me. The woman had laser vision. Except she didn’t have to know what I meant by all of those terms of endearment.

“Is that so?” I asked, going for a flirty tone that didn’t fit the moment. But I had to try.

She nodded and smiled, then she did something we hadn’t had much occasion to do. She touched me. She ran her fingers down my chest, playing with my chest hair. “When you’re all dirty, dominant alpha, you call me ‘dirty girl.’ You say that most of the time,” she said with a knowing grin as her fingers trailed farther south, feeling so damn good. “Twice you’ve called me ‘sweet girl,’ and it’s when we’re doing something really dirty. Like when you came on my face, and when you put your finger in my ass. And I think you do it to remind me that you like it really dirty too. That you don’t see me any differently when we’re doing that.”

Damn. She was undressing me, and I was already naked.

I said nothing, just waited. I schooled my expression, even as her nails brushed across my abs, her touch electric.

“And then sometimes you call me ‘baby,’” she continued. “I haven’t quite figured that out, but I think you say it in the heat of the moment.”

There. She’d done it. She’d seen through me. All the way.

But she’d also given me an out, and I grabbed it, clutching on for dear life, flashing her an easy grin. “You figured me out, Nina. It’s just the heat of the moment.”

Her brow creased. “It is?”

I dipped my face to hers, pressed a kiss to her forehead. She closed her eyes as I whispered, “It’s all so damn good with you that sometimes I’m not thinking. I’m just living in the moment of your list.”

The list.

That was it. That was all this could be.

She nodded. “That makes sense. I’m living in the moment too. And every moment has been incredible.” Her fingers roamed up my chest, then she looped her hands around my neck, playing with the ends of my hair. So simple, yet so intimate.

Hitting me once more in a way I hadn’t expected.

My skin tingled. Just from her fingers along my neck.

“Adam,” she said, and my name sounded like honey on her lips. Like all the sweetness in the world. Because that was who my friend was in bed. She was my sweet, dirty girl. My sexy virgin.

And she was mine.

“Yes?” I asked, fighting off the desire to use her name.

Her lips curved into a grin. “You know how you said you’d ask me again tonight? To give you my virginity?”

I swallowed roughly. Of course I remembered that. “I do.” For a split second, the terrible thought flashed through my mind that she was backing out, that she no longer wanted this.

But then she threaded her fingers more tightly through my hair, brought me closer, and whispered, “You don’t have to ask. I’m giving it to you. It’s yours.”

And that was when I knew how screwed I was going to be.



And so I was there. I’d reached number nine.

Goodbye, V card, hello other side.

I was walking down the Jetway to a plane that would whisk me to another hemisphere. One foot in front of the other.

I sat up in bed, lifted my arms over my head. “Will you take my shirt off?”

“Yes.” He rose too, reaching for the thin fabric and whisking it off me in a flurry. He groaned when he stared at my breasts.

He brushed his fingers between them, running them along the curves. “I didn’t spend nearly enough time worshipping these beauties last night,” he said, shaking his head like that was a damn shame.

As he cupped them, it seemed like a shame to me too. My nipples hardened under his touch, and I arched into his palms. “Maybe my list needs addendums,” I said softly, playing with that idea. I hated the thought of completing the to-do list.

Tags: Lauren Blakely The Gift Erotic
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